Saturday, December 01, 2012

Biyun, Shanghai

After a relatively easy flight, nice exit row seats on a newish aircraft and a quick transit through immigration at the massive Shanghai Pudong airport the first port of call in Shanghai was the Citidines in Biyun.  MB had visions of Shanghai being crowded and awful like Mongkok in Hong Kong (was quite wrong in this regard).  Tripadvisor reviews for the Citidines were good, and the rates were pretty good.  It appeared to be close to LongYang Metro Station where the airport Maglev train terminated, however it was a lot further than it looked on the map.
The Maglev from Shanghai Pudong airport is amazing, turns a 40min taxi trip into a superfast 8 minutes, very smooth and quiet with no real sensation of speed, especially at night.
The Maglev was very easy to access from the China Eastern airlines terminal, just a short walk to reach it.  Maximum speed of the Maglev is displayed in the carriages, ours reached 301klm.
Had to get a taxi from LongYang Metro station to Citidines, showed the driver the printout from the hotel with the address and map in mandarin. The driver got to the right street but the Citidines was nowhere in sight, he was jabbering away in mandarin of course....  Had to call the Citidines with the China Mobile SIM just purchased at the airport and get the receptionist to give directions to the driver, turns out the taxi was only about 200m from the Citidines.
After an 8 hour flight it was good to go for a walk and get a bite to eat and some supplies at Carrefour, a massive supermarket - could barely see from one end to the other it was so huge.
The room there was quite good, more of a serviced apartment with a little kitchen.  Great wifi in the room, enough even for MDR to have a Skype teleconference back to OZ one morning.
The neighbourhood seems to be pretty cosmopolitan, spotted some international schools and lots of foreign restaurants, Costa Coffee, Bollywood Indian restaurant, Japanese sushi places, steakhouses etc. and a Carrefour and Decathlon nearby.
Also a nice park and canal area across the road from the Citidines.

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